It’s Valentine’s Day, well not really, but who really wants to fight those crowds? We got a baby sitter so the wife and I could spend an early Valentine’s night out. We had heard about the Crown and Goose and it’s great food, but never made the trip to the Old City to check it out. Man are we glad we did! THE BEST meal we have had in some time. Let’s get down to business…
We learned online they have their own parking lot, which is great for the Old City. It is directly across the street and is easy to find with the British Crown and Goose mobile parked in the first space. They give you a token you can pay with, so makes it convenient and free.
The First Impression
We entered and the hostess greeted us with a smile, saying hello and offering a booth. We couldn’t help to notice all the Valentine’s Day decorations. They really mean business with their holidays. I doubt any restaurant in Knoxville has decorated for Cupid’s big day. The restaurant is spacious, well decorated, and really looks like a gastropub in Britain, not that I would know first hand. There is a huge bar in the center and the tables fall into place around it. It was very comfortable, and had a family feel to it, like I had been going there a long time. It seemed as if there were alot of regulars, as several times we overheard servers and bartenders calling customers by their name. That’s a good sign. They keep people coming back.
We sat down and our server (Miranda? I think) came over and was very friendly. She asked if we had been there before, and since we hadn’t, took us on a little menu tour. It was great. She seems to be a walking Crown and Goose dictionary. She knew everything and far more than I would ever expect someone to know. She made some recommendations and made us feel like we were her only table, even though she had several. We couldn’t decide on a beer, but no problem, she offered some samples. They were all great. I loved the cider beer, of course I got a hard time from my wife on that one. You know, babies, apple juice, that sort of thing.
The food was so great, if you haven’t been you’ve got to go. We took the recommendation of the server and ordered the Oysters Rockfeller ($14), from the small bites portion of the menu. They took obviously fresh shucked oysters, breaded and fried them, and served them atop chorizo sausage, spinach, and sherry cream sauce. OH MY GOSH, these were tender, full of flavor. The only bad part was my wife wouldn’t let me eat more than my half. Very good.
We forgot to order a soup or salad. The house made soups did sound tasty though. In fact they had a beef vegetable stew, it sounded great. My wife decided on the fish and chips ($14 but half priced when we were there for $7) Unfortunately I am allergic to cod. My wife said they were fantastic. They were seasoned with some kosher salt, served with fresh home made fries, tarter sauce, and some great cole slaw.
I opted for another recommendation, the Pork Shank (27) served with kale and kidney beans. I opted to trade out the beans with the brussel sprouts. Let’s break this dish down into each component. The brussel sprouts. Every part of me wants to say YUCK. They are after all, little green cabbagy things. Holy cow, they were unbelievable. Well seasoned little pan sauteed goodies with some pork belly or something like that. They were so good, I could have eaten a whole plate of them. The kale, I know, boring right? Wrong again! Absolutely amazing. Im not supposed to like this vegetable. Of course after they cook it up with the bacon, celery, and other goodies, I don’t feel like I’m eating a veggie anymore. Now to the big deal. I’m talking about the 10 pound lamb shank served over mashed potatoes. Tender, juicy, meaty, marinated goodness on a big bone. What more can I say? Awesome!
Dinner is over but it is Valentine’s right? Doesn’t matter how stuffed I am I am going to treat my lady right. We ordered the chocolate torte, served with a raspberry puree, home made whipped cream, on a pecan crust. What a great way to finish off a great meal.
Let’s Sum It Up
If you have not been to this restaurant you have got to go. The restaurant atmosphere is perfect, the service the best I have had in years, and the food is something you wouldn’t expect from Knoxville. We enjoyed it so much we asked for a manager. The General Manager came over and we told her how great everything was, and it is evident she leads the pack. She seemed fantastic as well. Kudos to The Crown and Goose. I hope they get the recognition they deserve.